Omaha Tournaments

Poker tournaments have always been the most popular form of online poker, and although online poker tournaments have historically been dominated by Texas Holdem, the growing popularity of Omaha has led to more and more Omaha tournaments being offered by popular online poker sites. After reading this introduction to Omaha tournaments we would advice you venture over to the Omaha MTT strategy section.

Omaha tournaments are offered in the same formats as Texas Holdem poker tournaments, with both scheduled tournaments with larger entry fees and bigger prize money, and sit and go poker tournaments, which take less time to complete, are generally limited to a single table, and start as soon as the table is full, unlike the bigger tournaments which begin at a given time of day.

Omaha is a more complex game than Holdem though and is also nowhere near as well understood by the masses, which means that it tends to be a fishier game overall, so to speak.  This presents both additional opportunities for skilled players to leverage their advantages, and a higher comfort level for less experienced players, who will find themselves less out of their league in terms of how they measure up against the average player in tournaments.

Omaha Tournaments Feature More Action

One of the things that tends to happen in Texas Holdem tournaments is that, among those who are good at playing them, the play does tend to follow some fairly standard lines at times.  So while sound strategy is definitely required, the game has been studied so much, and so much has been written about  them, that you often see some fairly dull action.  

This is not to say that Texas Holdem tournaments aren’t exciting, it’s more like the skill set and strategy of a lot of players often tends to be pretty similar, and in these cases, the outcome tends to come down to luck more than anything.  The action can also get pretty tight at times in Holdem, with a lot of pots being taken down pre-flop.

So the game play with Holdem tournaments tends to follow what players currently have, and players with better hands at any given moment can play these hands very aggressively.  With Omaha though, it’s much less about what kind of hand you have now, and much more about what you may have when all the cards are dealt.

So with Omaha tournaments you see a lot more drawn hands winning pots, which means that you also see a much looser style being played and a lot more action in terms of the betting.  Many players find Omaha tournaments a lot more exciting and engaging than Holdem tournaments, and if you’ve ever played Omaha tournaments, it’s not hard to see why.

Omaha Tournaments Are Definitely Looser

Omaha in general is seen by more and more players as a wonderful antidote to the tightness that has gripped Texas Holdem more and more over the years, as more players learn that playing too loose in Holdem isn’t preferable.  So Holdem these days is more a game of aggression, and this is even more so the case with Holdem tournaments.

Omaha, on the other hand, by its very nature, is a much looser game, as things aren’t so determined by what players have at any given point.  So instead of it being correct to fold so often, by virtue of being behind and not having the correct odds to continue, Omaha is much more a game of drawing and odds and with 4 cards in your hand instead of just two in Holdem, the possibilities become both more complex and more numerous.

This isn’t to say that it’s always correct to draw in Omaha, and in fact this is far from the case, and the secret to being a good Omaha player is to know when it’s correct to play on and when it is not.  Most players don’t really have a good understanding of this though and play too loosely, which is a nice situation and is the root of all of the additional action and excitement you see in Omaha.

When you add in the additional excitement that poker tournaments offer over cash games, which can be much more of a grind to be honest, and also add in the additional strategic complexity of tournaments, Omaha tournaments may very well be the ultimate form of poker.  

Don‘t Be Shy To Give Omaha Tournaments A Try

Many players are a little reluctant to take up the game of Omaha since they feel that they aren’t that familiar with the game, and may also be a little intimidated by seeing all of those cards.

While there indeed is a great deal of difference between having four hole cards with Omaha versus only two with Holdem,  and you do need to remember that you must use two cards in your hand along with three from the board to make five card hands in Omaha, other than that it is a very similar game to Texas Holdem.  

So there’s no real reason not to be willing to try out Omaha, and especially Omaha tournaments, where you can buy in for a comfortable amount and the worst thing that will happen is you will gain some valuable experience as well as have a lot of fun without really risking anything you can’t afford to lose along the way.

You may want to stick to Omaha Hi tournaments starting out, where the best hand wins the pot, but once you become familiar with that, you can also give Omaha Hi/Lo tournaments a try, where both the high and low hand can win a share of the pot.  This adds even more fun and complexity to the game, and provides all you can handle of both.

So feel free to pick one of our top rated Omaha tournament sites by clicking on the links we have created for your benefit, and see what you have been missing.

Related Articles:

2008 WSOP Omaha Events Guide — Complete guide to the 2008 WSOP Omaha Poker Tournaments. We try to update this article yearly.

Titan Poker Omaha Night – A run down of the events available at Titan poker, a top poker site for non US players.